Richard John Kraft

Aug. 19, 1936-Jan.27, 2018

Richard John Kraft, 81,

Rugby, died Saturday,

January 27, 2018 at his

home with family at his


Richard was born on

August 19, 1936 in Rugby,

ND. His parents were

George and Christine

(Schmaltz) Kraft. He was

raised on the family farm

and attended most of his

school in Rugby. Richard

was in the United States

Marine Corps from March

14, 1956 to March 13,

1959. He was stationed in

San Diego, CA. He gra-

duated from high school

while in the Marine Corps

at San Pedro Adult School

in California.

On September 30, 1959,

he married Viola West-

gard. From 1960 to 1963,

he worked road construc-

tion building Interstate

94. The next few years he

worked for Pierce County

driving a gravel truck. He

started a cab business in

Rugby and always did

small carpentry work on

the side. Throughout the

1970’s and early 1980’s,

he drove truck for Winger

Cheese in Towner. For

the last 20 years, he drove

school bus for Hartley’s in

Rugby and became the “go

to” guy around the Rugby

area if you needed a

storage shed.

Richard’s passion came

from going on camping

and fishing trips with his

family and many friends.

He enjoyed the trips to

Canada with his family

and later with friends and

grandchildren. Richard

also enjoyed travelling to

Alaska a few times with

Loren to fish and sight see

and visit with Dave (a

very good friend) who

lived in Alaska at the

time. He also enjoyed cof-

fee every morning with

Kenny and his buddies at

Cenex, and appreciated

all the help from his

neighbor and friend Ken

over the years.

Another big part of

Richard’s life was when

he joined the World-Wide

Church of God. He at-

tended 30 annual conven-

tions in a row. This travel

took him all over the Un-

ited States and a few

countries. Richard would

spend hours studying the

Bible and read hundreds

of his Bible study books

over the years. He loved

visiting with people about

the stories of the Bible.

Richard and Viola were

divorced in 1978 but have

always remained part of

each other’s lives and took

care of each other when

needed. They were at all

family holidays together

and travelled together to

see their children and

grandchildren. The fami-

ly celebrated Richard’s

80’th birthday together at

Lake Sakakawea. It was

about that time when

Richard started his strug-

gle with cancer. This

struggle lasted about a

year and a half and Viola

was the primary caregiver

for Richard over the last

few months, right up until

the time of his death. He

also had great support

from his family during

this challenging time.

The family would like to

thank Heart of

America-Hospice in Rug-

by for the wonderful care

that Richard received.

Richard is survived by:

Viola; his 5 sons; Kent,

Minot, ND; Keith, James-

town; ND, Lyle (Becky),

Minot; ND, Lance,

Bismarck, ND; and Joel

(special friend Lydia),

Bismarck, ND; grandchil-

dren, Joshua, Tyler, Jesse,

Timothy, Dora (Adam)

Tschosik, Sadie, Joel Jr.

(Mariah) and Zane Kraft,

and; 10 great grandchil-

dren; sisters, Genevieve

Petry, Long Beach, CA;

Eyvonne Guillen, Minot;

and Marlene (special

friend Don Noltimier)

Smith, Penn, ND. He was

preceded in death by: his

parents and a brother in

law, Henry Guillen.

Celebration of

Richard’s life: Saturday,

February 3rd, 2018 at 4

p.m. at Thompson-Larson

Funeral Home, Minot.

Visitation: One hour

prior to the service.

Interment: North Dako-

ta Veterans Cemetery,

Mandan, ND later in the


In lieu of flowers,

memorials can be made to

Heart of America-Hospice

in Rugby, ND